B Vitamins Improve Cognitive Function in Subjects with Elevated Homocysteine:
A clinical trial recently published in June 2014 reports that B vitamin intake improves cognitive function in middle-aged and elderly individuals with elevated homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is an amino acid made by the body from methionine. Elevated levels are associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
The researchers assigned 104 subjects between 55-94 years of age with elevated homocysteine levels to receive a placebo or B vitamins consisting of 800 mcg of folate, 10 mg of vitamin B6, and 25 mcg of vitamin B12 daily for 14 weeks. The investigators assessed cognitive function using the Basic Cognitive Aptitude Tests at the beginning of the study and again after the intervention period. The researchers also measured serum levels of total homocysteine, folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12.
The B vitamin group had significantly increased total score on the Basic Cognitive Aptitude Tests and increased sub-test scores for digit copy, Chinese character rotation, digital working memory, and recognition of meaningless figure. Additionally, the B vitamin group had significantly increased serum levels of folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 with significantly decreased homocysteine levels.
The study authors stated, “The results demonstrated that [a] supplement containing folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 in middle-aged and elderly patients with hyperhomocysteinemia could improve their cognitive function partly and reduce serum total homocysteine levels.”
Meg’s take: I have seen some amazing perks in cognitive function when supplementing with B12 and the other B vitamins. My opinion is that these vitamins are real GAME CHANGERS! When taking tests in school or during homework hours (yes, sometimes hours) my children suck on a lollipop called a Revita Pop, which is a yummy way to get in the B12 aspects and increased cognitive function. Not only do they notice a difference, but their teachers do as well! For more information on Revita B12 lilies, ask Meg (they are available through my practice, WELL.) http://revitapop.com/
Cheng D, et al. Nutr Neurosci. 2014 Jun 18. [Epub ahead of print.]